My name is Chyrel Garding, I am native to Montana and live in Billings. I am enrolled at Montana State University and am pursuing a degree in Human Resources Management. I work in the human resource department at Rimrock Foundation, the region’s largest treatment facility for substance abuse and behavioral health.
I have a love/hate relationship with the criminal justice system. I always believed that the justice system was fair and guilty people went to jail and paid for their crimes until my sister and current MTIP freed client, Katie Garding, was found guilty of vehicular homicide by a jury and sentenced to 40 years in prison for a crime she didn’t commit. This singular moment changed my view of the law and opened my eyes to the injustices found everywhere. This is where my passion for criminal justice reform and freeing the wrongfully incarcerated began. It’s an honor to be a member of the Board of Directors at the Montana Innocence Project because I have firsthand knowledge of the lives they change.